4

votes

Replacing my non-stick frying pan?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created August 18, 2012 at 11:41 PM

I've decided to replace my 12" non-stick frying pan because I noticed some odd smoke coming off of it as it was heating up on the stove (it had just been washed and dried). I'm assuming that's bad news, and I hear non-stick coatings are bad anyway.

Any recommendations? I'm relatively new to cooking so I don't really know what's out there in terms of materials. I mainly use this pan for frying eggs and grass-fed beef burgers in tallow/coconut oil/butter.

I'd like something relatively easy to clean, and moderately priced. Thanks.

5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 31, 2012
at 03:29 AM

I smelled it, was shocked by what I smelled. Smelled like burning rubber. I threw away the food and the pot. But then I graduated to aluminium pans, which didn't at least give off odor. The road to Paleo compliance is through incremental steps, not giant leaps.

C4a0c9f9a748f1d3354055bc6d020c7e

(298)

on August 21, 2012
at 05:48 PM

I don't wash mine with soap, I just have a brush that I use under running water if there is something stuck to it. You can use soap if you want but it seems unnecessary. You don't have to oil and heat it after use, in fact, mine came pre-seasoned. The one thing I can recommend is that if you are going to cook eggs on it, let it heat up slowly, don't just start with the burner on high. It will cook more evenly with a little time. I think it is worth a try. I paid $17 for my favorite cast iron pan. I paid almost 10 times that for the le croueset that pretty much sucks (at least for eggs).

A2e73b869061fc20067e4ef8f26f83f0

(140)

on August 19, 2012
at 11:01 PM

The weight isn't an issue because it never leaves my stovetop. That's where it lives. If I do move it, I guess I just consider it part of a workout. :) And I don't understand what people are doing to clean these things that they think is so difficult. It is probably the item in my kitchen that takes the LEAST amount of time and effort to clean.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on August 19, 2012
at 09:26 PM

Overheated teflon pans will outgas and kill birds, but it sounds like you're saying you smelled that before you used them?

C4f1a0c70c4e0dea507c2e346c036bbd

on August 19, 2012
at 06:24 PM

Due to my Chrohns I have an iron deficiency so iron leaking isn't bad at all. Its slow to absorb. I also like the flavor. But I dread cleaning it.

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19473)

on August 19, 2012
at 06:19 PM

Not Ewww, yum! I've made some of the best bacon and eggs in cast iron pans. Put in the bacon 1st, let it cook at a slow temp until some of the grease makes the oil for the eggs, remove the bacon, lower the heat, crack the eggs open, and it's pure awesome. And it doesn't stick if you have enough grease and the temperature isn't too high.

211d4075d68b24cd0aa7ebfa94262bb9

on August 19, 2012
at 06:06 PM

Cast iron pans are heavy, extremely difficult to clean, the handle gets hot, and they leach iron into your food which is not good. Yet in every cookware thread people rave about how wonderful they are.

A2e73b869061fc20067e4ef8f26f83f0

(140)

on August 19, 2012
at 03:55 PM

It isn't harder to clean at all. It's easier to clean because, so long as there isn't anything stuck on it (mine is well seasoned by lots of use and I use a decent amount of fat when I cook), then all you really have to do is wipe it out with a soft cloth or paper towel.

94480caec9fbbaacc386d86a45efa720

(1007)

on August 19, 2012
at 02:10 PM

"could kill zombies" is *not* a downside. That should go in the "pros" column.

963322f175cdd4c5f7d52cc372b3a167

(646)

on August 19, 2012
at 04:55 AM

Ewww...........

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on August 19, 2012
at 12:00 AM

Cast iron is the best answer, and Wagner is one of the best. Mike has my vote! Also use this method for seasoning, I did it and my pans are tough as nails. http://sherylcanter.com/wordpress/2010/01/a-science-based-technique-for-seasoning-cast-iron/

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18 Answers

5
C4a0c9f9a748f1d3354055bc6d020c7e

(298)

on August 19, 2012
at 12:24 AM

I love my Lodge cast iron. It is well seasoned with bacon grease and works like a charm.

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19473)

on August 19, 2012
at 06:19 PM

Not Ewww, yum! I've made some of the best bacon and eggs in cast iron pans. Put in the bacon 1st, let it cook at a slow temp until some of the grease makes the oil for the eggs, remove the bacon, lower the heat, crack the eggs open, and it's pure awesome. And it doesn't stick if you have enough grease and the temperature isn't too high.

963322f175cdd4c5f7d52cc372b3a167

(646)

on August 19, 2012
at 04:55 AM

Ewww...........

4
Medium avatar

(243)

on August 19, 2012
at 02:21 PM

This is a nice article on cooking material http://chriskresser.com/the-best-and-worst-cookware-materials

4
Ae8946707ddebf0f0bfbcfc63276d823

(9402)

on August 18, 2012
at 11:47 PM

Take at a look at this response on another thread and the comments below it. Should be very helpful:

http://paleohacks.com/questions/125568/is-new-wagner-cast-iron-as-good-as-the-old-stuff/125585#125585

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on August 19, 2012
at 12:00 AM

Cast iron is the best answer, and Wagner is one of the best. Mike has my vote! Also use this method for seasoning, I did it and my pans are tough as nails. http://sherylcanter.com/wordpress/2010/01/a-science-based-technique-for-seasoning-cast-iron/

2
429e01b74c31847aed3af35ef9973256

(427)

on August 19, 2012
at 06:46 AM

I really, really love my stainless steel pan. Just as easy to clean as non-stick, plus it's great for browning meat. I can stick the whole thing in the oven if I want since mine doesn't have one of those ruvbber handles. Big fan.

2
1296f5fecd084f101d7c5fbe013f07eb

(1213)

on August 19, 2012
at 05:50 AM

If you want something lighter than cast iron, snag something from the Cuisinart MultiClad line...I received a set for my bridal shower, and they are a fantastic buy. They are comparable to the much-lauded All-Clad - fully clad, not just the bottom of the pan. You can fry eggs nicely in them with proper technique. Whatever you use, without a nonstick pan, adequate fat is key.

I will say that I use my cast iron just as frequently...it seems to depend on my mood rather than some particular quality lent to cooking.

2
518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on August 19, 2012
at 02:31 AM

Cast iron rules. If you love love love the idea of food not sticking and have some moneyz lying around, I tried out some fancy titanium pans that were super awesome too. In an ideal world I would have two cast iron (medium and very large for roasts etc) and one of those fancy titanium pans.

1
07c86972a3bea0b0dc17752e9d2f5642

on August 19, 2012
at 02:01 PM

I use ceramic for eggs and cast iron for bacon, burgers and fajitas and potatoes. I've done eggs on cast iron and I can't stand the taste it imparts. But meat tastes great.

1
6d64cd6dc98d6ab763bd03678a317964

(2177)

on August 19, 2012
at 05:55 AM

Cast iron is a good choice. Properly "seasoned" you can cook an egg with ease. That said, you should really look into getting a hard anodized aluminum pan set. Something like the Cuisinart GreenGourmet. Hard anodized is non-stick and you can use metal utensils on it. Further it doesn't' have any of the nasty chemicals that Teflon has. I have the All-Clad version and it totally rocks!

http://www.zappos.com/cuisinart-greengourmet-hard-anodized-10-piece-cookware-set

"Exclusive Cuisinart Ceramica nonstick technology is ceramic based instead of petroleum based, helping to conserve existing oil supplies and the coating is applied at a temperature one half that of conventional nonsticks. And it???s completely free of PTFE and PFOA. The cookware???s hard anodized construction provides high heat conductivity, which requires less energy to reach desired cooking temperatures."

1
C4f1a0c70c4e0dea507c2e346c036bbd

on August 19, 2012
at 03:19 AM

I was thinking of getting a cast iron pan. The downsides of it are that its heavy, sounds like its harder to clean, its heavy and could kill zombies. The extra iron flavoring might be good though I like it when they serve food on a piping hot iron skillet.

A2e73b869061fc20067e4ef8f26f83f0

(140)

on August 19, 2012
at 11:01 PM

The weight isn't an issue because it never leaves my stovetop. That's where it lives. If I do move it, I guess I just consider it part of a workout. :) And I don't understand what people are doing to clean these things that they think is so difficult. It is probably the item in my kitchen that takes the LEAST amount of time and effort to clean.

C4f1a0c70c4e0dea507c2e346c036bbd

on August 19, 2012
at 06:24 PM

Due to my Chrohns I have an iron deficiency so iron leaking isn't bad at all. Its slow to absorb. I also like the flavor. But I dread cleaning it.

A2e73b869061fc20067e4ef8f26f83f0

(140)

on August 19, 2012
at 03:55 PM

It isn't harder to clean at all. It's easier to clean because, so long as there isn't anything stuck on it (mine is well seasoned by lots of use and I use a decent amount of fat when I cook), then all you really have to do is wipe it out with a soft cloth or paper towel.

211d4075d68b24cd0aa7ebfa94262bb9

on August 19, 2012
at 06:06 PM

Cast iron pans are heavy, extremely difficult to clean, the handle gets hot, and they leach iron into your food which is not good. Yet in every cookware thread people rave about how wonderful they are.

94480caec9fbbaacc386d86a45efa720

(1007)

on August 19, 2012
at 02:10 PM

"could kill zombies" is *not* a downside. That should go in the "pros" column.

1
Dbc43080bf9381864f5c6910e1264677

(176)

on August 19, 2012
at 02:51 AM

cast iron! I also love the le Creuset pans to heat up broth and for oven dishes.

1
45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on August 19, 2012
at 01:30 AM

If you really love nonstick, make sure it's not Teflon. Though, of course, cast iron is the favorite in many kitchens.

0
9292f931425e13b43002a93eea1ba576

(108)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

I agree with the cast iron pan suggestion.

0
C835934198ffe146cb90eebc22c6b8d8

on August 19, 2012
at 09:20 PM

I ditto the Cast Iron. LOVE our lodge. Its super easy to take care of. But it is a bit heavy..look at it as a bonus for your heavy lifting exercise hehe a bit of kosher salt and water cleans it up nicely. And yes NEVER use soap on it. I also like stainless steel as well. At our house we stopped using non stick..we had to get used to cooking our eggs in non--non stick. We have some old paul revere ware that is stainless steel and copper. So pretty! I find a good coating of either lard or coconut oil and a fork..works perfectly in stainless steel! Super easy to clean too! This you can use soap on and its lighter as well. Using a spatula removes the layer of oil so the eggs stick.

0
E40b2fc9ddcf702bab9d61d28b8c8440

(505)

on August 19, 2012
at 07:32 PM

I'm going to replace mine with a Swiss Diamond pan or two, when I can afford them

0
783704d6b31f91d4aebb402f089e082f

on August 19, 2012
at 02:01 PM

I'm another vote for cast iron, it's what I use the most. I do have a few non stick pans that I inherited at the place I'm living and I'll use them sometimes but I try to not use them that much. I put some oil on it every use, and I do an actual wash about once a week. Generally just use it, let it cool, and then rinse it off. It's pretty low maintence overall. I seasoned mine in May and it's still going strong. Cooking lots of things that give off some good drippings like bacon helps to keep it going too.

0
43873f3cea4f22f91653b0f5ec7ab9d9

(401)

on August 19, 2012
at 01:48 PM

Thanks everyone. Cast iron sounds great, but after poking around some more online, it might be a little high-maintenance for me. Can you not wash it out with soap? And are you really supposed to oil it up and heat it after every use?

C4a0c9f9a748f1d3354055bc6d020c7e

(298)

on August 21, 2012
at 05:48 PM

I don't wash mine with soap, I just have a brush that I use under running water if there is something stuck to it. You can use soap if you want but it seems unnecessary. You don't have to oil and heat it after use, in fact, mine came pre-seasoned. The one thing I can recommend is that if you are going to cook eggs on it, let it heat up slowly, don't just start with the burner on high. It will cook more evenly with a little time. I think it is worth a try. I paid $17 for my favorite cast iron pan. I paid almost 10 times that for the le croueset that pretty much sucks (at least for eggs).

0
5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 19, 2012
at 04:55 AM

Are you talking about the rubber-burning smell? I was disturbed when I bought some non-sticky pots and pans many years ago and smelt that pungent odor. I threw them away. I still used non-sticky pans but the new ones (enamel probably) I bought didn't give off odor.

I'm still trying to figure out what that odor was. My guess is: it could be dangerous; you don't want any part of it.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on August 19, 2012
at 09:26 PM

Overheated teflon pans will outgas and kill birds, but it sounds like you're saying you smelled that before you used them?

5e92edc5a180787a60a252a8232006e9

(345)

on August 31, 2012
at 03:29 AM

I smelled it, was shocked by what I smelled. Smelled like burning rubber. I threw away the food and the pot. But then I graduated to aluminium pans, which didn't at least give off odor. The road to Paleo compliance is through incremental steps, not giant leaps.

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